Saturday, November 25, 2006

Seasons of Our Sports Discontent

It was the (sort of) best of times, it was the worst of times. It took little more than four days for it to go from (sort of) one to the other.

Six days ago, Denver was tied atop the AFC West with San Diego. While Denver's offense had been inconsistent (aka, anemic), Denver's defense held many of the top ratings in the league and had earned much of the plaudits for the then 7-2 record. This past Sunday night, the Broncos met their lead-sharing opponents at Invesco at Mile High Stadium. A venue where the Broncos have dominated the Chargers.

Until this past Sunday nite, that is (Chargers 35, Broncos 27).

Four days later, Denver travelled to Kansas City for a Turkey Night duel with another AFC West nemesis: Kansas City. When the smoke of the various misfires cleared, Denver had gone from second in the AFC West, to tied for third in the AFC West. Only team left for Denver to compete with in the wrong direction they're taking is the lower-than-snake-spit Raiders.

Not all turkeys were eaten this day; some went on nation-wide TV display on FOX.

The rumblings hereabouts have been audible from the pre-season: after starting QB Jake Plummer's meltdown against Pittsburgh in the AFC title game, Plummer has been less than stellar in the '06 campaign. He didn't light any fires in pre-season. His finest game -- against Indianapolis at Denver -- ended in defeat, quite possibly on his one game-turning miscue. His performance in the rest have been...between "eh" to "ack".

The defense has carried the water for the offense through nine games. Two games later -- battered, bruised, and with key players out with injuries -- the defense can't carry the offense's water any more.

San Diego and KC proved that.

Denver's #1 pick in the draft -- QB Jay Cutler, Vanderbilt -- has been patiently waiting in the wings. Some fans wanted him to start Week#1; the clamor for this has intensified with each subsequent subpar performance by the offense week. Prior to the San Diego game, I wasn't yet among them.

After KC, I'm forced to admit I agree.

Granted, it can't be all laid on Plummer. The running game hasn't been up to par this season; that means the offensive line performance hasn't, either. The defense has been pitted and dinged, and several key players who helped make it the 'bend-don't-break' monster it was, are out for the season now. Carrying the load as it has, it's grown worn and more prone to bending and breaking. Special teams have been inconsistent or bad of late, with emphasis to the bad end.
And of course, let us not forget the coaching and play-calling. Perhaps biggest in this mix is the fact that long-time offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak went to Houston; any change like that has an effect.

Bottom line: it ain't working.

The fans want Cutler in and Plummer mounted backward on a mule, run out of town. I only agree that it appears a change is needed; Plummer just doesn't appear to have the confidence needed in this scheme anymore. Miracle-working receivers like Javon Walker -- seen throwing his helmet in disgust early in the KC game -- suggests that team confidence isn't what the spinmeisters try to sell it as, either.

I'm not convinced that at 7-4, Denver's playoff hopes are over. They are still very much in the wildcard mix. But if they can't beat teams like Indy and SD at home -- and these are the kind of teams Denver will likely face in the playoffs -- coupled with the pathetic performance of the offense should it continue apace, then it's reasonable to project that Denver will be a short-timer in a post-season they'll have to spend on the road.

So it appears it's time for the coaching staff to start looking to the future. Let the youngster get his feet wet, even if it's in liquid napalm. At worst, Cutler gets a rude but realistic education as to what lies ahead in the '07 campaign. At best, he invigorates the offense, and re-ignites a fire that appears to be dimming by the week in both the team and the fan-base.

That's how John Elway learned. And Peyton Manning. And a few other examples in the league at present.

Of course, if Shanahan starts Cutler and he fares no better than Jake, some of the boobirds will no doubt be demanding something else different: perhaps that he (Shanahan) bring back Bradley VanPelt. Or unretire John Elway.

Note to fans: as for resurrecting Elway, see Brett Favre's last two seasons.

Ah, the seasons of our sports discontent in Denver. You know there's discontent, when you have folks begging for the start of baseball early. As if the Rockies are going to make this less painful?


Friday, November 17, 2006


LOL...nawp. Not what you were thinkin'.

Today (Friday, November 17, 2006) comes forth the latest in the 44 year movie run of the 007 phenomenon: Casino Royale. Starring....Daniel Craig as a "blonde" 007?


However, judge ye not that ye be judged, or something akin to that, since I ain't yet seed it.

I was 5 when the first Bond movie -- Dr. No -- appeared on the big screen. I have, in essence, grown up during the Bond era. Since the inaugural hit that featured a suave British MI-6 agent, diabolicial villians and a jaw-dropping Ursula Andress in a bikini (which I was too young to appreciate at the time), there have been a total of 21 Bond movies up to now; there have been five Bonds before today's latest incarnation. And I've seen every movie more than once, with one exception (In Her Majesty's Secret Service).

Not to mention -- though being a red-blooded male, I must I must -- there have been countless Bond women before today as well.

Rrrrrowrrrrr. Sorry ladies; I yam what I yam.

At any rate, a local radio station asked for feedback from 007 fans as to their favorite Bond, episode, etc.

Here's mine:

Favorite Bond: Sean Connery

Favorite Episode: From Russia With Love

Favorite theme music: a toss-up between Live and Let Die and The Spy Who Loved Me

Favorite "chase scene": the boat chase in Live and Let Die

Favorite Bond woman: too many to mention, let alone choose from, though I tend to lean toward the one from For Your Eyes Only (Carole Bouquet), From Russia With Love (Daniela Bianchi) and from Live and Let Die (Jane Seymour, whom my pet rock Seymour is sorta kinda named after...).

Favorite villian: the multi-faced Ernst Blofeld

Favorite villian sidekick: Nik-nak (pictured above with Bond women Britt Ekland and Maud Adams)

Funniest Bond: Roger Moore

Worst Bond episode: Moonraker

Worst Bond: George Lazenby (On Her Majesty's Secret Service, 1969)

Current actor(s) who might have made a credible Bond: Harrison Ford. Bruce Willis.

Current actor(s)* who wouldn't: Ben Affleck. Leonardo DiCaprio. Rowland Atkinson. Sean Penn. Alec Baldwin. Jack Black. Billy Bob Thornton. Neil Patrick Harris. Ben Stiller. Tom Cruise. Adam Sandler. Rosie O'Donnell. Michael Myers. William Hung. Chris Rock. Eric Cartman. Homer Simpson. Hillary Clinton.

As I would rate those who have served thus far:

1. Sean Connery (7 movies)

2. Roger Moore (7 movies)

3. Pierce Brosnan (4 movies)

4. Timothy Dalton (2 movies)

5. George Lazenby (1 movie)

6. Daniel Craig....(?)

What future does the Bond genre have with Bond#6? We'll start to find that out today at a big screen near you.

For Bond trivia buffs, visit hyar.

* I use the term quite loosely...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Something Different

Wunst in a while, something a little different comes along amidst the email scam letters. It's probably still a scam letter, but it's different, and it needs a different approach.

And I'm just the difference to approach it.

One early morning, as I was sipping my first cuppa pure 100% Columbian coffee, I check the email account that usually contains a smattering of email scams just waiting for my pleasure.

This morning, it had one that was something different.

The title header was Hello, I Want To Know You!

And "she" went by the name of Valyusha (

Hi, Gentleman!

I am young and attractive woman and I believe I deserve for happiness as any human being. What do you think is the most important in this life? I believe you'll agree with me that LOVE is what we all are looking for.....

I am eager to make my man happy, I am longing for the cozy evenings together where we cuddle on the sofa and whisper tender words...

I have a lot of interests in life like reading, cooking, associating with friends, ripping off rich old men (okay, I inserted that) visiting new places and learn everything new.

If you are looking for the same things, I hope you answer my letter.


Have a nice day!


Wahl, ain't that nice? Valyusha wants me.


Along with the picture (above right), I sent "Valyusha" the reply of her dreams (the kind nightmares should be made of):


Ya shouldn't do thangs like that ta me first thang in the mornin', hon. 'Fore ah could git down my first dose of prune juice, ah read yore sexy wurds an' my false teeth fell out, causin' me a stain on both sides of my Depends.

Heckfeathers, dahlin', ah'm jest an' aging countree bumpkin widda little money from my revenooer-dodgin' days. But iffen yall want me ta speak them thar sweet nuthins in yore pert lil' ear, ah kin do that. It might come mixed widda bit of drool, but what's a lil' spit swappin' betwixt lovers, eh baby?

Who's yore granddaddy, yowzuh....oops, spit mah teeth agin. Hate when that happens.

Ah even writ a love sawng fer lil' tight-assed you, Valyusha:

Uh...honey ya KNOWWWWWWWWWW what ah like!

Chantilly lace an' a purdy face

widda a set of jugs, standin' up

a giggle in the talk and a wiggle in the ass

makes mah thang go up up... (dadgum this hyar rymin' crap)

There ain't nuthin' in the world like a big butt girl

who makes me act real funny

makes me buy Viagra

makes my bowels get loose

like a bad grass goose

oh Valyusha

that's a WHAT AH LICKS!


Ah caint wait fer ta hear more a what yall wanna do to this hyar feller, Valyusha. Yall write back now, yhear?

Bet she don't ;-)

(Note: it's been more than 7 days; she didn't)

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

To the Vets

My Uncle Bob -- Lt. Robert L. Hunt, Jr. -- and his P-51 Mustang, part of the 383rd Fighter Squadron, 364th Fighter Group, US Eighth Air Force, during WW II.

The USS Hornet, launching Col. Jimmy Doolittle's B-25 on the Toyko Raid, 1942.

Elements of the 5th and 7th Regiments, 1st Marine Division, during the breakout from Yudam-ni, Chosin Reservoir Campaign, Korean War.

US armored units in Gulf War I during the liberation of Kuwait.

November 11, 2006. Veterans' Day.

Thank a veteran today. Doesn't matter the war or time of peace that he or she served in. Doesn't matter the branch of the service he or she served in.

It only matters that they served. On behalf of all of us. Even those of us who opposed wherever they went, for whatever cause they were sent forth.

We all owe thanks to a veteran this day, for so much of what we have the liberty to take for granted, and sadly shouldn't. It came at such a cost for so many others.

Many more veterans come home than don't; the many more who do come home, tend to insist that the real heroes are still "over there": Belleau Wood. Meuse-Argonne. In the USS Arizona Memorial. At the bottom of Sunda Strait. At Guadalcanal. At the bottom of Iron Bottom Sound. On New Guinea. Tarawa. Guam. Saipan. Pelielu. Iwo Jima. Luzon and Leyte. Okinawa. Kasserine Pass. Sicily. Salerno. Anzio. Omaha Beach. St. Lo. Eindhoven. Nijmegen. Hurtgen Forest. Bastogne. Osan. Taegu. Taejon. The Pusan Perimeter. Inchon. Chosin Reservoir. Chipyong-ni. Heartbreak Ridge. Porkchop Hill. Ia Drang Valley. Hamburger Hill. Hue. Beirut. Grenada. Panama. Kuwait. Bosnia. Afghanistan. Iraq.

It's not always easy to convince a humble, modest veteran that he/she is just as much a hero, and owed thanks for having done their duty.

Thank 'em, anyway.

Thank especially those who've seen the ugly, unremitting face of the monster of war, and have come home with not all their scars on the surface; they carry their wounds deep within. That they have faced the lowest form of human primal instinct, and come home to become useful and productive members of society, speaks volumes about the character and fortitude they took forth into the maelstrom.

Even the hideous, demeaning cretin of war could not strip them of their better qualities. These are heroes, indeed. The "Greatest Generation" is replete with them. So is each following generation of servicemen and women.

I've thanked a fair share of veterans as I know and meet them. I'll add my personal thanks here now, to one Iraq veteran who volunteered to serve in the wake of September 11, 2001; he'd fought and won his own personal war with a serious health issue, and wanted to serve his country in the wake of Islamofascist aggression. He served two combat tours in Iraq, seeing more than his up-close-and-personal share of the monster of war. He brought the scars of that encounter home, and was slow to reveal the pain of those scars; but thanks to his own inner strength, and a well-knit, loving family second to none, he'll not only survive the war; he'll survive the scars he had no choice in bringing home, and go on to a full, productive life.

Thanks, Joshua.